Thursday, May 8, 2014
A Walk in the Woods
I recommend Bill Bryson's "A Walk in the Woods." Bill Bryson is a travel writer who begins as an armchair adventurer and, though he is far from a mountain man, earns his granite eyes. He hikes ~800 miles of the Appalachian Trail, often in the presence of his friend Stephan Katz. This is a more tangible adventure for the majority of the class. It's adventure from someone who doesn't know what pack straps are or how far 15 miles truly is. Bryson does a stellar jog portraying his surrounding, the events that transpire, and the emotions they both evoke. His hilarity and sass are expertly combined with human and environmental history. He flirts with the question of why he hikes and why he like and despises it, but doesn't quite spell it out. It's an adventure narrative that brings adventure geographically close to home with a vernacular and attitude reachable for inexperienced armchair adventurers.